How to hedge Super Bowl LVI Bengals and Rams Futures

By Adam Burke  (VSiN.com) 

February 7, 2022 11:42 AM
USATSI_17600897

We recently unveiled a new feature with the VSiN Help Desk for Super Bowl LVI. We’ve gotten a good number of questions so far and will be posting more answers as we continue to get queries. One of the most popular ones thus far has been about hedging Super Bowl Futures.

I’ll answer the questions more directly for those that asked, but I wanted to broach the topic here because I know it will be a popular one.

I’ll start with my cop-out answer. It all depends on your level of risk tolerance and what you want to achieve. It is a question that I cannot answer, but I can suggest some of the options that are available to you.

1. Do Nothing – AKA, let it ride. The questions we’ve received so far have been about Rams futures, specifically. The Rams are -4.5 (or -200), which implies roughly a 67% chance that they win. If you have a little more gamble, or look at your bet and potential winnings and decide you don’t want to hedge, your likelihood of cashing that future is basically two out of three. You can let it ride with the Bengals also, but the risk is higher.

2. Moneyline Hedge Pregame – If you have the Rams, a pregame hedge is easy. Just bet the Bengals moneyline at the best price you can find. Decide how much money you want to guarantee yourself and bet that amount. For example, if you have $100 on the Rams at 15/1, you’re sitting on a potential payout of $1500. Do you want to make at least $500? $750? Bet the proper amount on the Bengals ML to get there. That way, you win regardless of which team wins.

If you have a Bengals ticket, the same theory applies, but keeping in mind that you’ll have to bet $200 for every $100 you want to win on the Rams moneyline. Determine what the minimum profit you want to achieve is going to be and then bet accordingly on the Rams.

A potential hedging option could be to bet one of the quarterbacks to win the MVP, as four of the last five, five of the last seven and seven of the last 10 MVPs have been quarterbacks. Two of the non-QB MVPs were defensive players. It is extremely hard for a non-QB offensive player to win the MVP. A running back hasn’t done it since Terrell Davis in 1998 and Julian Edelman in 2019 was the first wide receiver since Santonio Holmes in 2009.

There is more risk attached, obviously, but it could be another option for those looking to hedge with Matthew Stafford at the best price available (likely around + 115) or Joe Burrow (around + 225).

3. Spread Hedge Pregame – I’ve seen some suggest maybe taking Bengals + 4.5 or Rams -4.5 as a hedge. With the Bengals, it makes sense. They could also still cover and not win. Basically, you’re sitting really pretty with a Rams future right now.

If you’re holding a Bengals future, I wouldn’t hedge with the spread, as the Rams could win, but not cover and you lose it all. Your ticket has a big enough profit potential to just lay 2/1 on the Rams and swallow that big pill to lock up some winnings.

4. Hedge In-Game – This is a little bit riskier, but the rise of live betting gives you options here. If you have the Rams, who, again, are roughly 67% to win the game, maybe you don’t need to cut into it before the game. Maybe you can wait and see what happens. The worst-case scenario is that the Rams get down big early and you can’t hedge.

If you have a Bengals future, you hope they start fast and maybe you can get the Rams at a plus-money price with a live wager. There is some risk here to be sure, but maybe more reward.

The answer is dependent on your risk tolerance and how much you want to guarantee in profit, but those are going to be your four most common options. It is impossible for us to give a concrete answer to these questions because there isn’t one. Each situation is unique. Hopefully this provides a guideline for what is available to you and you are able to show some significant profit for what wound up being an excellent futures bet on either team.

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